Sociology Department of Social Sciences
…As a single parent with a new daughter, I was now responsible for another human being’s life. I was not employed full-time, my daughter was on Medicaid and we were getting government assistance in the form of WIC and food stamps. I was now in the same position as so many other women I had previously sympathized with. My own experience opened my eyes to how easily a person can end up in difficult circumstances and how demoralized such circumstances can make them feel. At this point I experienced a major transformation and I believe that this experience played a significant role in my decision to declare Sociology as my major….
…I have always been sensitive to the historical prejudice and discrimination that oppressed groups have been subjected to in this country, but until I declared Sociology as my major, I only had a superficial understanding of the impact of social climates and social conditions on people, not only in America, but throughout the world. I cared about the struggles of less fortunate groups and individuals, but I was lacking a true understanding of the causes and underlying factors of their struggles. The Sociology curriculum at Clayton State University helped me gain a better understanding of the connection between people and their socioeconomic conditions. It has cemented my knowledge that an individual’s circumstances are a combination of their efforts and their socioeconomic circumstances….
…Before I began taking Sociology courses, I never really held any strong beliefs about the morality of homosexuality or the significance of gay rights. My original opinion was one of indifference. As I became immersed in the Sociology curriculum, I started to develop a quite a new and different perspective on the subject. The focus of the majority of my sociology classes has been on the misunderstanding, mistreatment and oppression of certain groups and individuals in society. Getting a clearer picture of this oppression has forced me to look at the struggle for gay rights from a new perspective. By comparing gay rights to other human rights issues, I came to acknowledge that denying basic human rights to a group of individuals for any reason, be it their sexual orientation or the color of their skin, is unjust….
…Becoming a student of Sociology has strengthened my views on many social issues. It has also given me the courage to voice my views and hopefully influence the views of others. Personally, I have evolved socially and I have become more vocal about my own social views. The difference between who I was before I decided to major in Sociology and who I am now is my willingness to speak up about issues that matter to me. I owe my newfound voice to the knowledge and social insights I have gained as a student of Sociology at Clayton State University….
…I have learned a plethora of information from all of my Sociology courses, but the most impactful courses of my entire college career have been those Sociology courses that have seriously challenged my own way of thinking and have inspired me to be a social change agent. Not only have I gained an abundance of knowledge, I am also becoming motivated to take social action….
…Looking back over my time spent at Clayton State University, I believe that the most important things I have learned from being a Sociology major is that I must remain a social advocate for everyone who is or has been part of a marginalized or oppressed group. No matter how much progress is made, there is always more injustice to fight and as long as there is humanity, there will be work to do. The Sociology program has brought me to the realization that my ultimate responsibility as a social change agent is to fight for those who do not have a voice and to remember that the struggle for justice is continuous….